Caution your men against extortion, harassment of motorists - NEWS FRONTIER DAILY


Tuesday, July 4, 2023

Caution your men against extortion, harassment of motorists

The Senate has called on the Acting   Inspector -General of Police, Kayode Egbetokun to as a matter  of  urgency, direct its personnel to stop forthwith, extortion, intimidation and harassment of motorists and commuters on the highways.

The Senate has also called for the training and retraining of police personnel to ensure civility in the discharge of their functions to Nigerians.

The Upper Chamber urged the Inspector General of Police to set up a panel to investigate the barbaric killing of a commuter and forward report of investigation to the senate via Secretary to the Government of the Federation

Resolutions  of the Senate were sequel to adoption of a motion titled,  “Urgent Need to Halt Extortion, Intimidation and Harassment of Motorists and Commuters by the Police on public roads.” It was sponsored by Senator Onyekachi Peter, APC-Ebonyi North.

In his presentation, Senator  Peter who noted that one of the primary functions of the police personnel was to; among other things,  facilitate the free passage and movement on highways, said that Section 49 sub section one of the Police Act, 2020,  empowers the police to conduct stop and search operations.

According  to him, subsection two empowered them to search and detain any person or vehicle where reasonable ground for suspicion existed, adding that  the police personnel who had the primary duties to facilitate free passage and movement of commuters and motorists on public roads had taken undue advantage by resorting to extortion, intimidation and harassment of motorists.

He said that  the continuous intimidation, harassment and torture that ordinary Nigerians experienced in the hands of those security agents called for action.

In his contribution, Senator Elisha Abbo, APC-Adamawa who noted that  the issues of extortion of commuters on  public roads were not only limited to personnel of Nigerian police but other security agencies in uniform, stressed that there   was an urgent need for  the police to reform itself.

According  to him,  this explained why coming out of modern security measures via utilisation of modern monitoring security cadets like Close Circuit Television, cameras to police and to protect Nigerians on the highways.

On his part, Senator  David Jimkuta, APC -Taraba who noted that  the operation of some police personnel at the highways was barbaric in nature, however  called for the composition of panel of enquiry on the recent killing of a commuter by police personnel on the highway, with severe disciplinary measures for the culprit, just as he  urged the Senate not to allow the issue to be swept under the carpet.

In his contribution,  Senator Victor Umeh, LP- Anambra Central  said that  there was the  need to focus more on punishment of officers involved in dehumanisation of commuters on the highways, while suggesting summarily dismissal of the officers involved.

On his part Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe, APGA,  Abia Soutg who decried the constant dehumanisation of Nigerians by police personnel at the various check points in the South -East, said that  Nigerians including pregnant women, breastfeeding mothers and the sick, among other vulnerable persons, were often subjected to come down and walk a distance even in the rain by police personnel.

On his part, Deputy Senate Jibrin Barau called for investigation on the dehumanisation of Nigerians on the  highways.

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